With the New Year upon us, you probably have some New Year’s resolutions on your mind. Here’s a three simple things you can do to massively increase your likelihood of success.

Find A Goal Partner!

A University of Pittsburg experiment studied people who followed a weight loss program. There were two groups – one with “homework” that included sharing a healthy meal with a friend or family member, and calling each other to check in and encourage each other, and another with no homework.

The group with no friend/family member succeeded at a 24% rate, while the group with homework succeeded at a 66% rate. That is a 175% increase in success! As corny as it sounds, a buddy can make all the difference. If you don’t want to burden your friends/family, a coach can also be a great resource. The point is to find someone to keep you accountable, and meet with them on a regular basis to discuss progress.

Be Honest With Yourself!

More often than not, we give ourselves poor excuses. A few personal ones I use when I don’t want to go to the gym:

  • I’m too tired
  • I’ll do extra tomorrow
  • I deserve a break; it’s been a long day

When in reality – I don’t put in the extra work, because inevitably other things come up, I forget, or I am just as lazy the next day. During these times, I like to remember two things: the hard times I’ve been through, and my accomplishments in life.  When I think about the hard times I’ve been through, I internalize that I am much tougher than a weak excuse. After I think about my biggest accomplishments, I realize that I am capable of awesome things, and all I need to do is to get through it, one day at a time

Afterwards, I make myself a 5 minute promise. I’ll wait 5 minutes before eating that terribly unhealthy lasagna, I’ll jog for 5 minutes to start, or just write for 5 minutes. Most of the time, things will start to flow, and I’ll get what I need to done. However, maybe 5% of the time, I really am just that tired, and the rationalization is correct. And that’s okay. I don’t have to win every battle, as long as I’m winning the war.

Do The Unsexy Work!

Every single serious bodybuilder I’ve met knows the saying – looks are 80% diet and 20% exercise. You can have a great looking body if you just watch what you eat, and do a bit of exercise. But why is it that people are so focused on CrossFit, Insanity, P90x, or some other workout? Because talking about eating under a certain calorie number and cooking chicken breast is unsexy.

This is the same with sales. One of my friends, a top performing salesman, followed up with a client for two years before he was given the opportunity to sell to them. Most salesmen do not put the level of effort into following up, but it’s paid off in spades for my buddy.

For the most part, we already know what we need to do to succeed. We have to try a little harder at work, eat a little less, start moving around more, and pay more attention to our loved ones.

Work Your Ass Off!

Success doesn’t come easily to anyone. With all the stresses of a job, school, social expectations and surprises in life, it’s tempting to take a day off. Sometimes you’re just having a bad day and want to say “Fuck it.”

Even Mark Cuban, billionaire owner of the Dallas Mavericks, has bad days. What does he do? Eat ice cream and watch a TV series? Play video games for half a day? No. It’s the same as when he was 25 and broke. He says – “I remember my goals, and remind myself that I’m down there is no fucking way I am going to get where I want to go and I have to get my ass out of bed and get rolling.”

Let’s take a page out of Mark’s book, and do what we need to – day in and day out.

Let me know what your biggest barriers to goals below in the comments!